The Concerts VR Token — Review and Interview
ConcertVR is owned by a Berlin based Company, Goodstuff-Media. They bring the experience of a concert directly to a user through VR technology. The company is looking to raise about $30M USD through the sale of their own CVT Token at 0.00015ETH each for a total of 60,000 ETH. The token enables users to purchase concert tickets, on-demand events, songs, and more.
Their pre-sale sold out in less than 4 days and raised about 1.1M € through 1,200 ETH. Originally the company was planning on launching their ICO on April 2nd, 2018. But due to Google’s Message regarding ICOs, they have delayed this decision by two weeks. Their main ICO will be now open from April 15th to May 15th, 2018. The company has already won multiple awards, and is currently increasing the roster of artists and partners, with new ones every week.
ConcertVR’s idea is straightforward. They want to bring concerts and festivals to Virtual Reality. Their attempt to make this market a reality includes the utilization of their cryptocurrency to enable artists, vendors, and and ticketing platform to communicate and trade with each other in an ecosystem. The purpose is to make the visual and economic experiences much better for multiple players in the music industry.
What makes the company special is the fact that all the team members have been in the entertainment industry for over 15 years, we interviewed their CEO, Sebastian Deyle, to find out what makes them different, and what the company has in store for the next couple of months.
“Imagine you could enjoy concerts from all around the globe in real time without leaving your home?“ — Sebastian Deyle, CEO at concertVR
One of their key technical differentiators, is the camera angles that they record at any given concert. Enabling the user to choose where they want to be during the event. The company claims to have achieved this through their eye-tracking technology.
Finally, the company’s utilization of Blockchain technology is a direct result of solving the complexity of the festival ecosystem, between managers, ticket sellers, merchandise, artists, and so on. They effectively enable artists to sell an unlimited amount of digital tickets, since anyone could experience the concert from home. Far more interesting than the current DVD and Netflix solutions.
From their point of view, purchasing a physical ticket actually has a series of barriers of entry:
Furthermore the company is looking to bring more than just the real live footage of a concert. The company has ambitious plans to also build an online store that would enable users to purchase individual songs, concert events, and special content and access that you would not otherwise find during the typical experience.
Entertainment companies tokenizing content are also able to provide feedback and dynamics that create a more personalized experience. One of such experiences is the ability to vote. They want to create a social network of sorts, where users vote on their favorite song and artist, which is becoming an increasingly used strategy with tokenized business models.
“Two years ago, me and my partner, Andreas Knuffmann, were working on the tourism and VR industry. Mostly creating hotel tours, where you could go into different rooms. The experience was okay, but where is the emotion? We would never buy this.
So we decided to get together and start brainstorming. Since we both have worked in the film and entertainment industries for over 15 years, we naturally thought that the best experience would be concerts. What if we can find a way to use VR technology to let people experience the concert in VR time from your own home, that is something we would spend money on.”
But why hasn’t anyone else done this? We made some calls and figured that a lot of artists were excited about the idea, we figured there was something here.”
Sebastian Deyle, CEO at concertVR
ConcertVR utilizes a standard ERC20 Token, the company subtly points throughout the white paper, that they will initially use Ethereum, which may mean that the company is ready to utilize other platforms in addition or substitution of just using Ethereum smart contracts. This probably points out to some concerns regarding the scalability of the Ethereum network in the upcoming years.
The company is planning on hosting a big portion of the data in a decentralized fashion through the Ethereum Virtual Machine. The company is planning to use a strategy similar to filecoin to decentralize the user information using ethereum. The concertVR will not be holding user information themselves.
The company has built a prototype that enables mobile users to watch concerts using 360 degree cameras, and also technologies like Google Cardboard. The company has mentioned that the current version of the software also enables the use of VR headsets such as Occulus Rift, HTC Vibe, and others.
ConcertVR has also mentioned that they have developed an eye tracking technology that would enable the user to be “anywhere in the concert hall”. The company currently provides three points of view:
- The Stage: The users will feel what it’s like to be a rockstar by essentially looking at the audience and seeing what artists see
- The Audience: Users will be able to experience the concert from the usual point of view as the audience
- The Back: This section is a general way of seeing the concert as a whole and experience its size
The company has multiple revenue streams regarding the sale and distribution of music and events. Their idea is to enable users to be able to purchase concerts and songs individually, and also enable users to purchase a monthly subscription.
The company is pricing each product as follows:
- Subscription (monthly): 8.99€
- Live-concert: 24.99€
- Recorded concert: 14.99€
- Single song: 2.49€
The song pricing is slightly higher than what you would find on a digital store, the reason for the higher cost, is that the songs that are being purchased are technically complete 360 degree video portions of an event or festival, so you are getting much more than a song.
The company is expecting to make over 250,000€ in its first three months of operation, over €8M in its second year (3,200% increase in revenue) and over 23M€ in its third year (300% increase). The goal is ambitious, but the company thinks it is conservative based on the traction they’ve received already.
The purpose of the tokenization of the platform is to create a microeconomy similar to that of kik’s kin and other social network platforms, that enable multiple players to pay and sell the creation of their content. In the case of concertVR, they will enable artists to sell their music directly to the public through the platform, through tickets, subscriptions, and even enabling the sale of merchandise and other licensed products.
The company had a fantastic Pre-ICO and was able to sell out in only 4 days. Raising 1,200 ETH (~$600,000). The company is now looking to raise 60,000 ETH (~$30M USD) through their ICO.
The company was looking to launch their ICO on April 2nd, 2018. Due to the recent news from Google, Facebook, and Twitter, to ban all cryptocurrency-related companies from their Ads offerings, the company has decided to delay their ICO until April 15th.
Based on their white paper this is how their token distribution looks like:
- 55% sold during token sale
- 18% used to develop the platform and maintenance
- 12% will be given to advisors
- 10% held by the company
- 5% will be reserved for partnerships with artists and others
The biggest challenges the company will face will be to convince users that they will continue to grow as fast as they need to, and the fact that they are arbitrarily fundraising at a valuation of over $50M USD pre-revenue, may bring considerable difficulties to the companies ability to fundraise.
The Virtual Reality Market was valued at $5.2B in 2016 and is expected to grow to $162B by 2022. Some of the most interesting investments in technology in the last couple of years have been around the creation of VR hardware, so it is expected that there will be a 40 fold increase in the amount of people owning this hardware within the next 4 years.
Festivals are also extremely difficult events to organize, prepare, and execute. Let alone verify. Almost exactly a year ago, Billy McFarland was supposed to create one of the most exclusive and interesting festivals in the world. The Fyre Festival. The event was supposed to occur in the Bahamas over the weekends of mid April to the beginning of May 2017. Once people actually landed on the island, they were horrified to discover the event did not exist as promised, and as a result the organizers are currently facing over 8 lawsuits with an estimated value exceeding $100M USD in damages.
The company has been working on the project since 2016 and claims to have a fully functioning prototype. Their demo can be found on the following YouTube video:
The video shows that the prototype requires a facebook account and connecting it to the concertVR servers. In reality, the company will enable users to login using email, wallets, facebook, and other authentication systems. The company is planning to launch their beta version of the project in October of 2018.
ConcertVR is currently a product by Goodstuff-Media in Berlin. Their CEO, Sebastian Deyle is an experienced producer hosting multiple TV shows in Germany. He has also worked in the entertainment industry for over 15 years and has also worked with Virtual Reality technologies, however he’s never been happy with the current solutions offered.
Their CCO, Andreas Knuffman is an awarded executive producer, and freelance director that has worked in the industry for over 25 years. Most importantly, Andreas and Sebastian have worked together in the past building other technologies and working in entertainment.
Lastly, their head of development, Frank Zahn, is the CEO of Exozet, another Berlin-based company with over 150 employees, that specializes in what they describe as the “Digital Transformation” of companies through the use of Digital Marketing.
The company also has a wide range of other talent in the music and digital marketing industry, including Stefan Schulz, a veteran in the entertainment industry who worked Universal Music group and serves as a board member to multiple other entertainment companies.
The company currently decentralizes the information on their users, however it is still difficult to predict exactly how this is done, and there are multiple ways to do it wrong, and very few ways to do it right.
“All data will be stored on a decentralized cloud based data bank which will be hold on the net by nodes.” — concertVR White Paper v1.3 p.16.
The company mentions that no user data will be stored on concertVR servers, does this mean that our data will be stored in the nodes, and therefore publicly available to anyone? How is this mediated against privacy laws in different countries? We are not quite sure yet.
There are of course, multiple different companies attempting to come with similar solutions for concerts in VR, such as NextVR (which focuses on sports). So the company will have to quickly face and defeat a lot of incoming competition. If their ICO is successfully funded, this problem could be partially solved through a strong marketing campaign with the funds raised. ConcertVR also has the advantage that they are focused on VR, and also specializing in the European market.
That said, concertVR has an extremely experienced team in the field, and has been able to create very strong relationships with artists and players, many of them which will be revealed the weeks following the beginning of the ICO sale. Furthermore, the creators have demonstrated their ability to close deals, partnerships, and focus exclusively on generating VR content, as opposed to any type of concert content.
Lastly, the company is attempting to increase in size relatively fast. They expect their product to triple in sales every year. While this goal is conservative for a startup with an experienced team, it is still risky, just like any other startup.
ConcertVR’s proposes an argument that most of us will agree on, which is that the role of AR/VR technology in digitization of human experience will be massive in the next decade. We can see evidence of this trend in any meaningful analysis of the market, including:
- The investments into AR/VR
- New Hardware enabling the technology
- Better software for AR/VR
- Many more companies developing solutions
- The trend towards a digitized and personalized lifestyle.
The biggest question for concertVR will be to demonstrate that they will play a significant role in the industry and also be able to achieve that long term as more players enter the market. It is currently unclear how they will answer that, but if they do, they are in for a massive and very profitable markets.
The fact that they were able to quickly sell out their Pre-ICO is already a good indicator that this company will success at their ICOs, but we are curious about their ability to perform once their launch their platform, and most importantly, their ability to get big name artists signed and using it.
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